Epistemicide sustains knowledge regimes in mainstream social and political sciences, which are dominated by Eurocentric and Western-centric perspectives. The ‘other’—the rest—has often been neglected or rendered as an ‘exotic tool’ for research. Today, more and more academics who identify with global south(s) positionalities set foot in the metropolitan university, demonstrating that they also have critical knowledges to offer on the social and political world, while the Global North in some spaces has opened up for ‘learning more’ and ‘teaching less’. However, mere inclusion of global south(s) voices and scholars into Western Academia by way of diversifying syllabi or discussing ‘alternative’ methodologies and ways of knowing is insufficient to substantively breakdown the epistemological barriers and walls that encase mainstream academia which often continues to subjugate and facilitate the subjection of the so-called ‘other’.
Questions arise as to why it is important that we look critically at how knowledge is produced and reproduced within academia and who is left out of the conversation. Why is cognitive injustice a crucial concept as we begin to interrogate and rethink methodological approaches and the current dominant ways of knowing and researching?
Join us as we think through these questions during the first installment of our reading group sessions. Our text for this session comes from Boaventura de Sousa Santos’ book: Epistemologies of the South Justice Against Epistemicide. We will read the first two chapters from his book: ‘Manifesto for Intellectual-Activists’ and ‘Introduction: Creating a Distance in Relation to Western-centric Political Imagination and Critical Theory’.